Sena Handlebar Remote Offers New Level of Control
Manage music, cameras and communications without letting go of the bars.
The new Sena Handlebar Remote allows you to remotely control your Sena Headset without taking your hands off the handlebars. This eliminates the need to reach up to your helmet for tasks like initiating group intercom, answering phone calls or adjusting music volume. Not only does it improve safety, but it also allows you to see and identify buttons more easily while adjusting your headset’s settings.
The device is designed to connect to Sena Smart Ready headsets such as the 20S, 10U or 10C, giving users access to features using a glove-friendly joystick and button controls. Additionally, you can operate a Sena Prism Action Camera when it is paired with a 20S or 10c headset. Controlling the Prism remotely using the Handlebar Remote, allows you to capture helmet cam video footage without removing your hands from the handlebars or you can use it to take photos of yourself while on solo rides.
The Sena Handlebar Remote is installed without tools by simply clamping it onto the handlebars. When installed on the left handlebar grip, you can conveniently control the remote using your thumb.
Worried about having to keep yet another device charged? The Sena Handlebar Remote battery lasts several months on a single charge and can be quickly recharged using the same USB cable your Sena headset uses.
Testing the Handlebar Remote
Installing the Sena Handlebar Remote took just seconds. A strong spring mechanism allows you to open up the arms and clamp it onto the inside of the left handlebar grip. The clamp mechanism feels durable and the joystick controller is a more intuitive interface than the buttons on most headsets.
Pairing the device to our Sena 10C Headset was painless and the instructions were very easy to follow. A simple guide provides a diagram that translates button sequences from the headset to the remote control. We recommend practicing button sequences before you ride, so you can become more familiar with them and avoid distraction on the road.
One drawback we noticed was that riding with the handlebar remote leaves less room for your hand on the handlebar grip. Those with larger hands may experience some discomfort when riding with the device on the handlebar grip. But the remote control can also be clamped onto other areas of the handlebar if desired.
Working the thumb controls takes a little getting used to and it’s easy to inadvertently push the wrong button sequence while riding in rough terrain. But with practice, this becomes much easier. One thing we did notice is that there is a slight delay when using the remote when compared to the headset controls. You may need to hold down the button a second longer than you normally would to activate certain features.
Occasionally, we ran into a problem where the remote would lose communication with the headset, which required a restart to restore communication. But we expect these minor hiccups to be resolved with future firmware updates.
Take Photos of Yourself on Solo Rides
One of the new opportunities the Sena Handlebar Remote enables is the ability to take photos of yourself with the Sena Prism action camera while on solo rides. It’s easy to setup the Prism on a tripod and use the handlebar remote to take photos of yourself at scenic locations you visit during your trips.
Sure, you could use your camera’s timer to take a photo of yourself but it can be annoying running back to your bike just in time for the shot. With the Sena Handlebar remote you have full control of when to take the shot.
Action shots are also possible without taking your hands off the handlebars. Set the Prism in Burst mode and you can use the remote to take up to 10 consecutive shots in a row to increase your chances of getting a good shot as you ride by the camera. Just press the joystick button for 2 seconds when you get in range to get great shots of yourself with the front wheel in the air!
We tested the handlebar remote’s ability to take a shot from a distance and we were able to take photos from up to 200 feet (60 meters) away. With the Prism’s wide-angle view, you’ll want to be much closer to get a good shot. But it’s important to keep range in mind to avoid riding too far away from the camera, causing it to disconnect from the headset. Making sure your devices are fully charged will help to maximize range as much as possible.
Photos Taken Using Handlebar Remote and Prism Camera
Riding with the Sena Handlebar Remote improved our safety by making fidgeting with buttons on our helmet a thing of the past. For those new to using a Sena Headset, being able to see the remote buttons while pressing them may make learning to use the headset a bit easier. If you like to take solo rides, the Prism camera and Handlebar Remote combo will allow you to come back with more dynamic shots to share with friends and family. With a retail price of $89, the remote is also an affordable gadget that can open up a new set of opportunities for your rides.
- Safely control headset without removing hands from handlebars.
- More intuitive buttons make it easier to control headset features.
- Take scenic/action shots of yourself remotely when combined with the Prism action camera.
- May not be comfortable on handlebar for those with larger hands.
- The remote occasionally lost communication with the headset.